Left photo taken by Brett Buchanan, right photo taken by Dustin Halter
Alice In Chains revealed at a recent Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp Q&A the key to their and STP’s successful guitar sounds, and why they’re different.
Jerry Cantrell said, “Black Sabbath, Van Halen, there’s a lot of bands that play a half step down from 440. As far as Drop D, Drop D I learned from Tony Iommi and Eddie Van Halen, ‘Unchained.’ A ton of Iommi stuff, I was always kind of there.
That’s strictly selfish, the guitar just sounds better to me, it sounds chunkier and thicker. Layne [Staley] never had any problems hitting anything. A lot of bands I liked messed around with a little over tunings over 440 or whatever. I always liked the weight of that, it seemed to have a little bit more attitude than four forty.”
Mike Inez added, “For our band, I think a half step down and the drop tuning, a bulk of our songs are like that. Let’s say Stone Temple Pilots are coming in tomorrow, they’re traditional A440, and their music just sounds fantastic the way it is. So there’s no rules to this thing, whatever sounds good to you, go with that.”
Cantrell then said, “Also it turns out to be some nice little foresight down the road because as you get older, your range drops a little bit, so you were already dropped when we started.”